Critical Method

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  1. Describe
    1. Pay close and careful attention to the work.
    2. What media are used? How are they used?
    3. What are the work's formal and aesthetic qualities: size, shape, duration, quantity, tone, pace, style, color, composition, mood, etc.
    4. What is the context in which you encounter the work? How does it relate to its environment?
  2. Analyze
    1. Is the work concerned primarily with materials? Ideas? Narrative? Form? Emotional expression? Politics?
    2. What does the artist appear to trying to say or do with the work?
    3. Does it comment on or refer to other art works?
    4. How does it relate to the artist's other work?
    5. What does the work say or do? What is it about?
  3. Evaluate
    1. Does the work achieve the goals the artist seems to have set for it?
    2. What do you like most about the work? In which ways is it most successful?
    3. What do you like least about the work? How and where is it not "working?"
    4. Suggest things the artist might change or do differently.
    5. Suggest alternative ways to present or distribute work.
    6. Suggest relevant artists, texts, or other things the artist might look into.
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